A LONG-standing Bradford businessman has spoken of his terror after he was threatened with a gun and forced to hand over a bag of cash containing around £7,000.

Jas Maharaja, managing director of Cemetery Road-based Maharaja Fabrics, has been in business for 40 years and says this is the first time something like this has happened.

The frightening attack, which police believe was pre-planned, unfolded on Sunday evening, as Mr Maharaja was leaving the premises with a colleague after cashing up.

His colleague was punched and Mr Maharaja was chased, attacked, and hit with a gun.

And while he tried to grab one of the man’s legs, the suspects managed to get away with the cash bag, which is thought to have contained around £7,000.

Police investigating the robbery are now appealing for information and have urged anyone who saw any suspicious activity in the area at that time to get in touch.

Speaking about the ordeal, Mr Maharaja said: “It was terrifying. He had a gun - he could have fired it.

“They should not get away with it, they should be punished.

“This is happening a lot now - it’s terrifying.”

He added: “It’s not right - we work 24/7, we work so hard.

“These days it’s not easy. For them, it’s easy money, but we work hard for it.

“With overheads and everything, it’s very difficult to make that money back quickly.”

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Armed police were scrambled to the scene in the aftermath.

Mr Maharaja, who also owns Bradford Bazaar on the opposite side of Cemetery Road, said: “It’s the first time it has happened - I’m terrified it could happen again.”

He said there are plans for businesses to get together and hopefully meet with police in the wake of the worrying raid.


A West Yorkshire Police spokesperson said: “Police investigating a robbery in Bradford in which a man was threatened with a gun are appealing for information.

The incident happened at business premises close to Maharaja Fabrics in Cemetery Road at about 7.30pm on Sunday, December 9.

“A man in his fifties was leaving the premises with a bag of cash when he was approached by three suspects who chased him back inside.

“He was then assaulted and threatened with a gun before the suspects fled with the bag, which is believed to have contained a large amount of cash.

“He suffered a minor head injury in the incident.”

Detective Inspector Mark Taylor, of Bradford District CID, said: “This would have been a frightening experience for the victim who was forced to hand over the bag at gunpoint.

“We believe this was a pre-planned attack and are keen to speak to anyone who saw any suspicious activity in the Cemetery Road area, possibly towards the junction with Thornton Road, at around the time stated.”

Anyone with information is asked to contact Bradford District CID on 101, quoting crime reference 13180616796, or use the live chat facility on the West Yorkshire Police website.

Information can also be reported anonymously to the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555111.